So Adam and I have been on the road for a year now and I feel like I need to write down some of my experiences and thoughts. I particularly want to talk about some parts of travelling that people never talk about.
I want to start by saying that most things in this article are negative. It’s not to say I don’t love travelling because I absolutely do, I wouldn’t still be doing it if I didn’t. It’s just I see so many articles saying you should quit your job and travel the world, but no one mentions the hard parts. So that’s what I am going talk about.
Firstly, no-one can prepare you for how much you’re going to miss your family. I have a pretty big family (4 siblings, 5 nephews and 2 nieces) which means it’s rare that we’re all in the same room. But when we do, it’s always an amazing mix of excitement and shouting. Since being away I’ve also missed out on a few big family events; a divorce, step-dads 60th, twin nephews’ proms, sister’s pregnancy announcement, and brother-in-law’s 40th. Also the fact that my nieces and nephews are growing up so bloody fast that every time I see them they’re different. One nephew once said “Auntie Kimberley every time I see you I swear you’re shrinking!” That is the part that has reduced me to tears on a few occasions since being on the road.
Secondly, missing friends too. I have a very close group of friends. We message daily (mainly abuse) which means they’re always there and we do try to Skype as often as we can. But recently one of my best friends split from her boyfriend, being so many miles away killed me. All I wanted to do was run to her house with some chocolate, wine and a shit film and give her a hug. Again it killed me being so far away.
Thirdly, the loneliness. I am pretty good at being on my own, sometimes I even need it. But sometimes this isn’t what I want. Sometimes I want to message friends and go for a drink. Or sit round someone’s house with a cup of tea. I’ve struggled with this in some cities more than others. Here in New York it’s different; we have friends here, I am doing codebar. I’m actually pretty busy. But this wasn’t the same in Prague or Istanbul. There I didn’t know anyone, I couldn’t just go for drinks with people, or pop to a friend’s house. Also the language barrier added to it. Normally I would talk to anyone, seriously I am good at finding that common interest and having a conversation from that. In Prague the language barrier was so hard that I was going to spin classes and would sit there in silence because I couldn’t understand anyone around me.
And finally, there is the fact that I spend most of my time with Adam. There are times when we drive each other absolutely bonkers. We are getting better, we now have a rule where if someone is wearing their headphones you’re not allowed to talk to them. But still, I spend most of my time with one person. We went from London life where we were both so busy that we’d have to schedule each other in. To travelling, where you’re telling the other person you want to go to a coffee alone as you need some space. We don’t actually say that but it’s basically true. Even last Saturday, I started feeling so overwhelmed with travelling that I needed some time out, so I jumped on the Subway to Central Park on my own, found a tree and just sat there, people watching and reading my book for 2 hours. After this I felt a million times better.
I know this post was all negative, if you’re still reading this I’m sorry. And like I said at the start it isn’t all bad but some of the stuff I spoke about is never spoken about in travel blog posts. And if I’m honest this is the easiest travel post I’ve written so far for this blog.
P.S Next up, read all about how I feel back in love with London